A scuffle between players marred a semifinal match at the national women’s football tournament in HCMC on Friday night.
Ho Chi Minh City 1 FC and Than Khoang San FC fought for a spot in the final last night but the game ended in a literal, physical fight between the two teams.
With home advantage and a stronger squad, the HCMC club dominated the game throughout, scored two goals in the 16th and 51st minutes and booked their place in the final.
In the last minute of the second half, Nguyen Thi Van of Than Khoang San FC, a club based on the northern Quang Ninh Province, performed a dangerous tackle on Truong Thi Phung of the HCMC club, but the referee decided to let the teams continue playing. Phung then got up and chased Van in anger, even as the referee blew the final whistle.
Other players joined the fray as Phung and Van fought each other. Some fans also joined the violence. One player of Than Khoang San FC was beaten and thrown down.
The melee was stopped after a few minutes by the referee and other officials.
The Vietnam Football Federation is reviewing the incident and has said it will suitably penalize the players involved.
HCMC 1 FC and Than Khoang San FC are rivals. They got a scuffle history when two teams had a brawl at Vietnam National Games 2010. The southern team has won the national championship seven times, including for the past three years, while the others were champion in 2007 and 2012.